Archive for November 20th, 2013

The JFK Week, Day 3

Locally everybody likes to talk about JFK speaking at a LULAC gathering at the Rice Hotel the night before he was assassinated. Nobody ever talks about the real reason he was in Houston that evening. JFK was in town for an appreciation dinner sponsored by the Democratic Party for Congressman Albert Thomas of the 8th District. The dinner was held at the now gone Sam Houston Coliseum where a couple of thousand or so local Dems attended. My Dad was at the event. Cong. Thomas is in the photograph of LBJ getting sworn-in aboard Air Force One the next day. He is the one wearing the bow tie.

At the time, Cong. Thomas was one of the most influential and senior members of Congress. In his remarks that you can find on the JFK Library’s website, the President mentions that evening that Cong. Thomas was contemplating retirement – he had first been elected in 1936 – and the President personally called him to ask him to postpone his retirement. The President also gives him a shout out for his role in building the nation’s space program.

Many credit Cong. Thomas with being a key force and player in getting NASA to set up shop in Clear Lake. In Baytown we named a traffic circle after him. The traffic circle is no longer there. Before we opened the George R. Brown Convention Center we had the Albert Thomas Convention Center where Bayou Place now sits. If you go to the Sundance Theater, right around the corner from the ticket booth is a replica of sorts of Cong. Thomas’ office with a desk and other stuff. You can peer into the little office but you can’t go in. Most people don’t pay attention when they walk up from the garage and go past the office on their way to catch a flick. If you ask me, Cong. Albert Thomas deserves much better than that. They ought to move his replica office to the Convention Center or to the Convention Center Hotel where folks can see it.

Cong. Thomas is one of the key players in H-Town’s growth. He also went to Rice. Maybe the Mayor can find the time during her last term to take care of one of her fellow Rice alums and stick his office in a place where he can be appreciated. After all, JFK came to town on November 21, 1963 to show him some love.

The 8th Congressional District is now represented by GOP Cong. Kevin Brady – go figure!

In 1963 there were three no-nos tossed in MLB. Sandy Koufax tossed one against the Giants and Juan Marichal tossed one against us – the Colt 45s. Who tossed the third?

The County put out the Early Voting in Person schedule and locations yesterday. Wednesday, December 4 through Tuesday, December 10. All days are 7 am to 7 pm with the exception of Sunday, December 8 – 1 pm to 6 pm. The folks that live beyond the Loop down the Gulf Freeway will have to go the HCC location. The folks that live beyond the Loop down I-10 East are pretty much screwed. I doubt they will want to go to Ripley, Kashmere, or Northeast Multi-Service. I raised this concern with the County today.

Don Nottebart of the Colt 45s of course tossed a no-no against the Phillies in 1963.

From the ‘Stros yesterday:

MLB and the Astros announced during a joint news conference Tuesday at Minute Maid Park that the 2014 Civil Rights Game will be played May 30 in Houston when the Astros meet the Orioles. The eighth installment of the game will be televised nationally on MLB Network.

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